Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Sale now on

With the dust settling on the Keegan tribunal, it seems it's now full steam ahead with the sale of the club. The issue has conspicuous by its absence from the back pages for most of the last couple of months, partly because there's been no progress and partly because (I suspect) events on the pitch have, for once, been a distraction from goings-on off it.

That said, though, sentiments towards Fat Mike didn't change overnight and our excellent early-season form never quelled the regular chant of "Fat Cockney bastard, get out of our club". The damning verdict the tribunal delivered of Ashley and the administration over which he presides only served as a reminder that we can't be rid of him soon enough.

So, who are now seen as serious prospective buyers?

There's Barry Moat, of course, who at long last submitted a formal bid for the club on Monday (incidentally, when they refer to a "written offer", I wonder if that means an email sent to the address that appeared on the official site?). If he were to be successful and (as is widely rumoured) install Wor Al as manager, then two-time Championship Manager Of The Month Chris Hughton would no doubt feel very aggrieved.

And there's the latest shady, unnamed and fiercely secretive consortium, this time from South Africa. Perhaps mindful of the Spitting Image song, Seymour Pearce favour Moat's bid.

And then there's us. Yes, us - the fans. Initially the Newcastle United Supporters Trust, with its Yes We Can campaign, is focused on acquiring a stake which, in the words of chairman Neil Mitchell, "will give the supporters an active representation within the football club". He's serious, too - over £20m had already been pledged ahead of the Trust's official launch at the Civic Centre tonight.

And it doesn't stop there: "Our long-term aim is to raise enough money to buy the club. It seems a long shot, but it's possible." With Newcastle, indeed it is.


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